School: Rockfield (roll number 15378)

Rockfield, Co. Sligo
Caoimhín Ó Duibhín

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Fairy Forts

Archival Reference

The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0174, Page 229

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There is a fairy fort in the townland of Gurtnakeerin in the parish of Killoran, in the Barony of Leyney in Co Sligo. There is a big ring of earth around the fort, and there are five caves inside - each cave is like a house. " Long ago a poor man lived beside this fort. He had but the one cow, and where should she stray one dull and wintry day but into the fort. The man did not miss her until night and after searching everywhere he thought at last of the fairy fort. "Be Gorra" says he, "thats where she's gone as sure as there's a bill on a crow", so off with him his lee to search the fort. What did he find inside but a leipreachan, and as he could not see the cow he thought that he might as well bring him home, and so he did. One day at dinner the man's daughter was eating meat, and the dog jumped up and snatched a piece and ran away. Soon after the girl got very sick and her father did not know what was on her. The leipreachan began to laugh, and the man asked him what he was laughing at. "Because you don't know how to cure your daughter says he. "If you cure her" said the man "ill let you go free. "No sooner said than done" says the leipreachan going out and bringing in the dog by the tail.

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John Lynch
Gortakeeran, Co. Sligo